Silk Road

Why President Trump Should Free Ross Ulbricht

The Silk Road’s creator has a lot to teach drug prohibitionists.

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Will Donald Trump give clemency to Ross Ulbricht, who is serving two life sentences plus 40 years without the possibility of parole for founding and operating the black market e-commerce platform called Silk Road? He's considering it, according to two anonymous sources who spoke with The Daily Beast.

The case for commuting Ulbricht's sentence is simple: He never directly harmed anyone, and his sentence was wildly disproportionate to the severity of the crimes for which he was convicted.

"A life sentence without parole is shockingly extreme," actor and director Alex Winter told Reason in an August 2015 interview about his documentary on the Ublricht case, Deep Web. "The bluntness by which the judge communicated why she was pronouncing this sentence took everyone by surprise."

At that fateful hearing in 2015, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest told the courtroom that she had decided to go well beyond the mandatory minimum of 10 years because Ulbricht had taken a philosophical stand against drug prohibition.   

The Silk Road's creator thought that he "was better than the laws of this country … This is deeply troubling, terribly misguided, and very dangerous," she said in her opinion. The Silk Road's "stated purpose," she said, "was to be beyond the law."

Judge Forrest was exactly right, which is why prohibitionists should have tried to learn something from Ulbricht's creation.

What's actually "troubling" and "terribly misguided" is the U.S. war on drugs, which has cost the public more than $1 trillion, fueled decades of crime and violence, and stolen life years away from millions of Americans.

Ulbricht set out to disrupt the drug war by moving sales to an online marketplace impervious to government interference, where consenting adults could buy and sell anything of their choosing.  

He aimed "to abolish the use of coercion and aggression amongst mankind," according to his LinkedIn profile, and create "an economic simulation to give people a first-hand experience of what it would be like to live in a world without the systemic use of force."

"[Ulbricht's] arguments are incredibly relatable," Vanity Fair's Nick Bilton told Reason in a 2017 interview about his book, American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road. "When it comes to [legalizing cannabis and mushrooms] I completely agree with Ross and his arguments … Where I started to have a really hard time is with the selling of things like heroin and fentanyl."

In a December column reacting to the news that Trump is considering clemency for Ulbricht, Bilton argued that the Silk Road "caused irreparable harm to others," citing the six people who allegedly "died from drugs they had purchased on the Silk Road, including a teenager in Australia, who had had an adverse reaction to a hallucinogen and had jumped out of a hotel window."

Those deaths were tragic and heartbreaking, and jurors were right to be moved—but the real culprit is the drug war itself, because that's what drove the narcotics trade underground in the first place. That's why there are no reputable brands, or quality control in heroin, LSD, or MDMA, so users have no choice but to take dealers at their word. The Silk Road was an attempt, albeit imperfect, to correct for the lack of information in drug markets, which is why on net it probably saved lives. 

A 2013 study in the International Journal of Drug Policy found that users flocked to the Silk Road out of concern "for street drug quality and personal safety" and that "vendor selection appeared to be based on trust, speed of transaction, stealth modes and quality of product."

Several users on the site's forums regularly answered questions about drug safety and what to do in the case of an overdose. 

The Silk Road made buying drugs "too easy," according to a mother whose son struggled with addiction before dying of an overdose. But shutting down Silk Road didn't make drugs less readily available—it only pushed sales onto less trustworthy online platforms or back onto the streets.

If the president does grant Ulbricht clemency, much of the credit belongs to his mother Lyn, who has spent the last 5 years tirelessly advocating on his behalf. 

"Please, Mr. President … give [my son] a second chance. He won't let you down," she said in an October video.

Ulbricht's critics often point to a series of contract killings that he allegedly ordered with the intention of stopping blackmailers who were threatening to bring him down. But those allegations remain unproven, the alleged murders were never carried out, and the government never charged him on those counts. 

"It's extremely irresponsible to fall on one side or the other [regarding] allegations of murder that have not been charged, much less proven," says Alex Winter.

And perhaps the Silk Road's most enduring legacy is bootstrapping bitcoin, as New York Times reporter Nathaniel Popper explained in 2015.

"Silk Road proved that bitcoin worked," Popper said at that year's Consensus conference. "It proved that you could actually send real value across the world."

Freeing Ross Ulbricht would be the appropriate way to cap off a year in which American voters made it loud and clear that they're ready to close the book on the drug war.

Bizarrely, Bilton claimed in his Vanity Fair column that libertarians are being inconsistent in pleading Ulbricht's case.

"If Ulbricht's supporters really cared about the war on drugs or libertarian ideals," Bilton wrote, "they'd be demanding that the nearly half a million people currently in U.S. jails for drug offenses should be pardoned too." Of course, that's exactly what libertarians have been saying going back to the 1970s

Prior to his sentencing, Ross Ulbricht wrote a letter to the judge pleading for mercy. 

"I've had my youth, and I know you must take away my middle years, but please leave me my old age … I certainly won't be the rebellious risk-taker I was when I created Silk Road. In fact, I'll be an old man." 

Ross Ulbricht turned 36 this year. Let's hope he's still a rebel and, soon enough, once again, a free man. 

UPDATE: Lyn Ulbricht reached out to Reason with concerns about the allegations against Ross discussed in the video. To learn more, please check out FreeRoss.org.

Produced by Zach Weissmueller. Graphics by Lex Villena.

Music: "Thoughts," by ANBR licensed by Artlist. 

Photos: ID 32821222© Iulius Costache| Dreamstime.com, ID 156631077©; Motortion| Dreamstime.com; Picture alliance / Tobias Hase/Newscom; Sthanlee Mirador/Sipa USA/Newscom.

 

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  1. “Ulbricht’s critics often point to a series of contract killings that he allegedly ordered with the intention of stopping blackmailers who were threatening to bring him down. But those allegations remain unproven, the alleged murders were never carried out, and the government never charged him on those counts”

    I’ve read the transcripts of those messages. If they’re true he really was trying to order a couple of rather brutal hits.

    But I have no idea if they really are true.

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        1. ZACH WEISSMUELLER,

          The case for commuting Ulbricht’s sentence is simple: He never directly harmed anyone, and his sentence was wildly disproportionate to the severity of the crimes for which he was convicted.

          While I would agree that the severity of his sentence was disproportionate to that of his crime. He definitely directly harmed people. He played host and pimp to the victims of the drug trade (addicts) for money. He profited from their slavery to these substances – directly. He’s a slaver.

          “A life sentence without parole is shockingly extreme,” actor and director Alex Winter told Reason in an August 2015 interview about his documentary on the Ulbricht case, Deep Web. “The bluntness by which the judge communicated why she was pronouncing this sentence took everyone by surprise.”

          She was probably tired of drug dealers enslaving people to substances and then profiting from their slavery to such substances (by whatever means necessary) that an addict takes to quell the shakes and deliver their next fix. But I do agree – It was much steeper than other drug dealers / substance slavers were sentenced, and thus, not reflective of “justice.”

          What’s actually “troubling” and “terribly misguided” is the U.S. war on drugs, which has cost the public more than $1 trillion, fueled decades of crime and violence, and stolen life years away from millions of Americans.

          I would gladly pay money to keep drug dealers, prostitutes, slumville, drive by shootings, theft, crazy people that talk to themselves, and addicts out of my neighborhood, off my sidewalk, away from my kids, etc. The problem isn’t so much the war on drugs, but that we have to have a war on drugs. Legalizing drugs isn’t going to fix this problem. Legalize it, and I’ll have a guy legally shooting up on the sidewalk in front of my house while my little daughter watches. Absolutely not. I am willing to sacrifice money, blood, pain, whatever, to keep the Seattle / San Francisco needle land culture (places where drugs are essentially legal), out of my neighborhood. So yeah. I’m fine with the 1 trillion. I’d be fine for even more than 1 trillion. And no – I’m not very sympathic to drug dealers / substance slavers rotting in a prison cell.

          Ulbricht set out to disrupt the drug war by moving sales to an online marketplace impervious to government interference, where consenting adults could buy and sell anything of their choosing.

          Well – not exactly “impervious” right. Right? I paid good money, to have it taken down. And they delivered.

          He aimed “to abolish the use of coercion and aggression amongst mankind,” according to his LinkedIn profile, and create “an economic simulation to give people a first-hand experience of what it would be like to live in a world without the systemic use of force.”

          Delusion. Become an addict, and see what “force” substance slavery has on you. And Ulbricht's motive to me, wasn’t even this goal as you have stated – but the goal of capitalization ($$$). I’m a capitalist. Capitalism is the best of them. But all the horrible things that commie pinko tards say about capitalism - Ulbricht'’s vision embodied. Quite literally.

          “[Ulbricht’s] arguments are incredibly relatable,” Vanity Fair’s Nick Bilton told Reason in a 2017 interview about his book, American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road. “When it comes to [legalizing cannabis and mushrooms] I completely agree with Ross and his arguments … Where I started to have a really hard time is with the selling of things like heroin and fentanyl.”

          Well. I agree with Nick. He’s a man of logic and reason. Cannabis is a very very mild drug, compared to most. Mushrooms probably need more research. I’d be hesitant to approve of their legalization, because I’m against hallucinogens, which are obviously not moral. Choices can only be “free” if people’ cognitive facilities are functioning. If a person can't deliberately think clearly or coherently, their ability to act freely is diminished. Our actions are "ours" when we are responsible for them. That and my step-niece-in-law was shot in the chest by her own boyfriend who was having a bad trip on some hallucinogenic cocktail. He got scared, saw her as some monster, and shot her in the chest, then started shooting at his own brother. He was tremendously regretful after returning to reality, where he killed his girlfriend, my relative, because he wanted to have fun with some drugs. A police officer tried to save her, but she gurgled her last in his arms. This is the real “war on drugs.”

          In a December column reacting to the news that Trump is considering clemency for Ulbricht, Bilton argued that the Silk Road “caused irreparable harm to others,” citing the six people who allegedly “died from drugs they had purchased on the Silk Road, including a teenager in Australia, who had had an adverse reaction to a hallucinogen and had jumped out of a hotel window.”

          Those deaths were tragic and heartbreaking, and jurors were right to be moved—but the real culprit is the drug war itself, because that’s what drove the narcotics trade underground in the first place. That’s why there are no reputable brands, or quality control in heroin, LSD, or MDMA, so users have no choice but to take dealers at their word. The Silk Road was an attempt, albeit imperfect, to correct for the lack of information in drug markets, which is why on net it probably saved lives.

          I checked the speculation meter – and it’s off the charts. The silk road probably saved some lives? Seriously? Zach lists people that literally died of drugs directly purchased from silk road, then goes on to say “silk road probably saved lives” yet is unable to reconcile the two. The solution is not to buy higher quality drugs at a cheaper price. The solution is to step outside the false dichotomy, presented by the absurdity of this site, of people are going to take illegal drugs or take legal ones, and accept that “legal drug use of heroin, LSD, MDMA, coke, crack, pcp, etc. etc. etc. is UNDESIRABLE. The problem isn’t where they are getting their drugs, or that their drugs are not good quality. The problem is they are taking drugs.

          Quality control in heroin, LSD, or MDMA? These drugs literally kill you and are extremely addictive. Heroin overdoses result in unconsciousness, convulsions, seizures, and fluid buildup in the lungs that result in a “foam” cap on the person’s mouth. Stereotypical drug overdose of heroin. Just look at Chris Farley’s picture for how the trade in these substances “save’s lives:”

          http://www.death2ur.com/farleydeath4.jpg

          The absurdity of this article is just amazing.

          Even pure high quality drugs results in images like these:

          https://www.narconon.org/blog/drug-prevention/parents-share-stories-childs-drug-overdose-effort-save-lives/

          A 2013 study in the International Journal of Drug Policy found that users flocked to the Silk Road out of concern “for street drug quality and personal safety” and that “vendor selection appeared to be based on trust, speed of transaction, stealth modes and quality of product.”
          Several users on the site’s forums regularly answered questions about drug safety and what to do in the case of an overdose.

          Right. Because there is a way you can take hard drugs continuously, and safely too! The reality is - Anyone who takes these drugs for a considerable length of time, will either be dead, or have debilitating mental problems, requiring dependency of others.

          The Silk Road made buying drugs “too easy,” according to a mother whose son struggled with addiction before dying of an overdose. But shutting down Silk Road didn’t make drugs less readily available—it only pushed sales onto less trustworthy online platforms or back onto the streets.

          Right, because legalizing the silk road, and legalizing drugs is going to be a net positive. Sure. I definitely want a guy shooting up on my sidewalk while my little kids watch. Nope!

          If the president does grant Ulbricht clemency, much of the credit belongs to his mother Lyn, who has spent the last 5 years tirelessly advocating on his behalf.

          I would recommend you guys watch the movie “mother (2009).” It is a Korean drama. In the movie, a mother defends her son without limit as he fights a murder case. It was impossible that her son, who was mentally challenged, but a really good person, would ever murder anyone. So fervently she fought for him to find who framed her son. And in the end, she finds out it’s true. Yes. Her son is the monster. Her son is a demon from hell. He is a murderer and horrible person. And immediately without question, she accepts him as is and protects him. This is what mothers do. Ulbricht’s mom is no different – at all!

          “Please, Mr. President … give [my son] a second chance. He won’t let you down,” she said in an October video.

          Hard pass. I think his sentence was harsher than other drug dealers, and it would probably be "just" to commute a good portion of it. But make no mistake, Ulbricht is a sophisticated drug dealer / substance enslaver. He is no different than the others, except he uses a computer instead and is more efficient at it.

          Freeing Ross Ulbricht would be the appropriate way to cap off a year in which American voters made it loud and clear that they’re ready to close the book on the drug war.

          Americans might be ready to legalize marijuana which is a very mild drug, even milder than alcohol. However, Americans are NOT making it clear they want to legalize drug dealing / substance enslaving in hard drugs like heroin, MDMA, coke, crack, meth, pcp, amongst others. This is not reality. It is delusion. There will be no "closing the book" on the drug war. Dealing in these and possession will likely always and forever be illegal. And rightly so.

          Bizarrely, Bilton claimed in his Vanity Fair column that libertarians are being inconsistent in pleading Ulbricht’s case.
          “If Ulbricht’s supporters really cared about the war on drugs or libertarian ideals,” Bilton wrote, “they’d be demanding that the nearly half a million people currently in U.S. jails for drug offenses should be pardoned too.” Of course, that’s exactly what libertarians have been saying going back to the 1970s.

          Substance enslaving / drug dealing and even taking drugs is NOT moral. Those who take drugs lose their moral compass, and further, cannot “freely” make responsible decision on drugs due to cognitive complications arising from the drug use itself. So no. Those drug dealers can stay in prison. Totally fine with that. I’ll pass on that future where heroin is legal and people are shooting up on the sidewalk in front of my home while my kids watch. Hard pass.

          Ross Ulbricht turned 36 this year. Let’s hope he’s still a rebel and, soon enough, once again, a free man.

          Let’s hope he’s still a rebel? Let’s hope NOT. Let’s hope he is convinced that partaking in the substance slave trade is not moral. Let’s hope Ulbrict and reason editors can transcend and reconcile the effects of such substances, and why we want those substances, the substance slavers, and the addict slums growing around them gone and out of our neighborhoods and why they need to be stigmatized out of existence.

    2. I read that he researched it, but never went through with it. And if he never went through with it, then he is not guilty of them.

      1. No, in the transcripts not only did he pay for the hits he thought that one was carried out and promptly arranged another.
        If they are true (and given what we know know about the FBI’s modus in cases like this, that’s a very big IF), then Ulbricht is a huge piece of shit.

        1. So what? The law forbids drug dealers from resolving issues of theft in a peaceful way. So when drug dealers get violent, it’s an act of self defense and survival made necessary by government.

          And if you think the government “frowns upon” drug-related violence, guess again. They know their laws increase violence and they like it that way because it helps justify their actions.

          When a drug dealer hires an assassin, he’s carrying out the desires of the authorities so you should place fault with them.

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          2. So what? [to hiring a hitman to kill someone]

            Phhhhhhhhhhhht... LOL.

            When a drug dealer hires an assassin, he’s carrying out the desires of the authorities so you should place fault with them.

            I don't believe it is the authorities desire for him to do that. I am aware that drug dealers can't legitimately go to the police to report their heroine, meth, coke, fentanyl or whatever else got stolen, or their drug money was taken. The drugs themselves cause tremendous damage, to the morale of, the morality of, communities of those they infect.

            Would you approve of your son to routinely "snowballing" with heroine and cocaine, to feed his addiction to them, and be able to do so cheaply with high quality products at a cheap price provided by the free market? And if not - why not?

            You guy's delusions of a nice and peaceful place where people are taking hard drugs is delusional. Completely delusional.

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            2. “Would you approve of…”

              No, I would not. Therefore should we ban all the things that I might disapprove of my son doing? Nor would I approve of the authorities using violence against my son for drug use. Nor would I approve of my son being locked in a cage to be beaten and raped by violent thugs for drug use.

              “a nice and peaceful place where people are taking hard drugs is delusional.”

              You have no evidence of that. Consider the state of crime before, during, and after prohibition of alcohol. Crime increased and consequences to alcohol use increased because of lack of accountability and quality control. It also drove people to harder, more concentrated and dangerous forms of alcohol. We see the exact same patterns on steroids with the war on drugs.

              Then look at nations that have decriminalized things like heroin (e.g. Portugal), only to result in lower rates of heroin addiction. Imagine that!

              1. No, I would not.

                Exactly. And we all know why. Drugs are bad, and they will ruin your life.</b

                Therefore should we ban all the things that I might disapprove of my son doing?

                I didn't suggest that we should ban all the things that you might disapprove your son of doing. I am suggesting that if there is a majority consensus - like if murder is bad should we ban it? - maybe we should ban it. The distribution and possession of substances, particularly, category one substances, that create slums, destroy families, and cause civil unrest, and that we know is not moral, we might want to include in that group.

                Nor would I approve of the authorities using violence against my son for drug use. Nor would I approve of my son being locked in a cage to be beaten and raped by violent thugs for drug use.

                The authorities don't need to use violence against your son for drug use, if he cooperates and doesn’t resist arrest. The constitution puts forth a structure for courts and justices. The only way criminals can reach those courts is if they are apprehended. This is the unfortunate part of the "reality" of apprehending criminals. Whether they murdered someone or are peddling 5 lbs of black tar heroin while trying to establish a collective of regular customers (addicts) continually giving them all their money in exchange for addiction, suffering, and death, they have to be apprehended. And ... again. Obviously - to reach those courts they have to placed somewhere pending trial - and that will be a cage no doubt. And because people and the victims of crime don't just want rehabilitation - they also want punishment. And this is part of justice - punishment. So yes, if the courts determine guilt - they may be in a cage for a long time. This is the reality. And it is actually preferred by a large majority of people. Lady Justice isn't just blindfolded with a scale. She also carries a sword. And the sword is to strike them down. Make no mistake about it.

                “a nice and peaceful place where people are taking hard drugs is delusional.”
                You have no evidence of that.

                There is evidence of this everywhere. Drug usage, particularly debilitating drug usage, destroys families, causes families to split up, increases crime, depression, and the drugs themselves cause the user of said drugs irreparable damage to the tissue in their brains, their personalities, and their ability to lead a moral life. Drug usage and addiction instantiates the conception of hell, here on earth. Just watch or read “trainspotting” the film or novel by the same name, for a fairly accurate rendition of what happens in the life of drug addicts (legal or not).

                Consider the state of crime before, during, and after prohibition of alcohol. Crime increased and consequences to alcohol use increased because of lack of accountability and quality control. It also drove people to harder, more concentrated and dangerous forms of alcohol. We see the exact same patterns on steroids with the war on drugs.

                “The creation of the world — said Plato — is the victory of persuasion over force… Civilization is the maintenance of social order, by its own inherent persuasiveness as embodying the nobler alternative. The recourse to force, however unavoidable, is a disclosure of the failure of civilization, either in the general society or in a remnant of individuals… – Alfred North Whitehead.

                So, the “win” regarding legalization of alcohol was not a win. Inadequate persuasion resulted in the elevation of this industry during prohibition, and an increased filminess in a large number of individuals of the populace regarding the morality of consuming such drugs, resulting in appeal of the prohibition, and a reduction in the stigma revolving around alcohol consumption. All of which, was a net-negative.

                Drinking alcohol is clearly NOT moral. When drinking alcohol - one has to look at the motives of why it is done. And I'm not aware of any purpose of drinking this poison (it is literally poison) other than its euphoric effects and those of recreation. Further one also has to look at the consequences of doing so - which is what makes this act not moral. It is for unearned empty pleasure, that causes, generally, immediate cognitive reduction while intoxicated, increased impulsivity, oftentimes violence, and the inability to make moral decisions while intoxicated. Long term effects are even more detrimental.

                Freedom to the modern libertarian is their ability to do what they want with their own bodies. But this is incomplete. Choices can only be “free” if their cognitive facilities are functioning. If a person can't deliberately think clearly or coherently, their ability to act freely is diminished. Our actions are "ours" when we are responsible for them. And so there is a fundamental difference between my conception of freedom, and that of the modern libertarian, regarding their “free” ability to make decisions while intoxicated.

                Then look at nations that have decriminalized things like heroin (e.g. Portugal), only to result in lower rates of heroin addiction. Imagine that!

                So, first, I don’t agree with your premise that decriminalization would result in lower rates of addiction. Prohibition reduced per capita alcohol consumption by about 30 to 50 percent. Cirrhosis death rates for men were 29.5 per 100k in 1911 and 10.7 per 100k in 1929. Admissions to state mental hospitals declined also. Arrests for public drunkenness and disorderly conduct declined 50% between 1916 and 1922. Which is reflected in a recent study as well - In a 2015 study (Journal of Health Economics) they found that medical marijuana laws increase marijuana use in both adults and adolescents. And why wouldn’t it – when higher quality drugs are suddenly much cheaper and more available after legalization? So these failed for political reasons not because they were not effective. Again - Persuasion failed.

                Second. Portugal did NOT decriminalize heroin. It is still a crime to possess and distribute drugs of this class in Portugal. What Portugal did do, was focus more on rehabilitation and community service for drug addicts/users (the victims), rather than prison terms. If you are in Portugal and are a distributor with a large quantity of black tar heroin, you should expect the authorities to use violence to apprehend you if you resist arrest for drug distribution and expect to be locked in a cage to be beaten and raped by violent thugs for drug use.

            3. Uh, yeah, I’d much rather my son be a coke addict with the means to feed his addiction than some fucking prisoner who gets savagely butt-raped every goddamn day because the state threw him in a cage with some jacked-up psychos who haven’t had a woman in 20 years.

              So, yeah, it’s definitely the *lesser* evil, no doubt about it. Not even a close call.

              1. Uh, yeah, I’d much rather my son be a coke addict…

                No. You would much rather your son be none of them. That is the logical and reasonable preference.

                Uh, yeah, I’d much rather my son be a coke addict with the means to feed his addiction than some fucking prisoner who gets savagely butt-raped every goddamn day because the state threw him in a cage with some jacked-up psychos who haven’t had a woman in 20 years.

                I would wager your son is more likely to be "butt-raped" outside of prison as a drug addict, than inside of prison where he will be forced off drugs. First lets address your premise. I disagree with it. Most drug infractions that actually result in them being kept in prison for a short term in a minimum security area. When my nephew was arrested, repeatedly, for drug usage and public intoxication (high), they didn't even send him to prison, and I live in a deep red state. They kept releasing him. Only when he didn't show up for his court date, did they give him a short two months in prison. Even afterward, when he returned to drugs and they arrested him again and again for possession, they did not imprison him. They required rehab, and community service. Only when he robbed his own mother's safe of all her savings and took her firearms and disappeared for two weeks to get high continuously for two weeks on hard drugs and return empty handed with no recollection of what happened, did they put him in prison. This time for about 5 months. Now we get to the "butt raping." After he was released from prison, he burned all bridges with anyone that would help him, and got high and lost all his paperwork (ID, SS card, birth certificate, everything). He was empty handed and penniless. He moved in with a gay dude who also liked drugs and "put out" in exchange for drugs. Even if you are straight, if you are an addict, you can be gay if you need some drugs.

                When my niece-in-law became a drug addict, she got high in a drug house, and passed out, someone raped her while she was asleep (or several guys, or 20 or 50, who knows). That didn't happen in prison. It happened out of prison.

                My other niece, she hooked up with a guy (also to put out) because he gave her access to the drugs that she so desperately needed. Only when the police finally caught them for armed robbery of convenient stores and sent her to prison, did she stop getting raped.

                So, yeah, it’s definitely the *lesser* evil, no doubt about it. Not even a close call.

                I didn't make the comparison. You did. Both are evil. Don't need to choose either of them. You can choose none of them. It's your false dichotomy - not mine. What we can absolutely determine is - both are evil. Both should be avoided. I do agree, that it is not just to sentence a "user" (aka victim) to a prison stint of 10 or 20 years. And rehab and community service is "better." People selling kilos and truckloads of drugs? I don't have a lot of sympathy for them. I really don't.

    3. Superstitious hillbillies order cops to kick in doors and murder people every day of the week–then act surprised that the initiation of deadly force kills people in their homes. Where in the Bauble does Jesus say to murder men, women and children to keep them from burning bush? Laws against trade and production are incompatible with prosperity, as Quaker fanatics Herbert Hoover and Richard Nixon demonstrated at our expense. Both Bushes also brought forth crashes and recessions as bad as TR’s. Asset forfeiture or fractional reserve banking? It’s one or the other.

      1. Superstitious hillbillies order cops to kick in doors and murder people every day of the week–then act surprised that the initiation of deadly force kills people in their homes.

        Cops don't typically kick in doors of simple users - but dealers with large quantities. And - I'm fine with that. The accidental death of people in their homes (or of cops getting shot by them) is an unavoidable consequence of having to aggressively capture and incarcerate perpetrators of crimes. If they were murderer's instead of drug dealers - there would still be mistakes and people would still die. The system isn't perfect, because people aren't perfect. </b

        Where in the Bauble does Jesus say to murder men, women and children to keep them from burning bush?

        Matthew 22:21

        Laws against trade and production are incompatible with prosperity…

        What if the trade were human trade? What if it was for organ production? So it doesn't matter if they are incompatible with prosperity, because obviously there are limits. Now we can discuss where those limits are. And I think you know where I am going with this.

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  2. I’m fine with it if it angers the lefties.

    Otherwise do not care.

    1. In Ulbricht's case. The punishment did not fit the crime. The "government" made an example of him because they were so offended. And there is nothing "just" about that.

    2. Oh, I see. So, you think he’s some scummy drug dealer who hurts people and belongs in prison, BUT, if it pisses off some commies, hey, that’s okay, just let him out! And, if that means you gotta tell his [supposed] victims to go fuck themselves to own some libs, so be it!

      Wow. You really are a worthless piece of shit, ain’t ya?

  3. Maybe as a condition of the pardon he could file affidavits that he never ordered any hits on anyone. That would shift the burden of proof to where it belongs – the prosecutors.

    1. The burden of proof should already be on the prosecutors.

      1. Indeed, but tell that to the ones justifying the sentence based on uncharged conduct.

  4. I agree that the war on drugs is a horrible waste and I would fully support clemency for Ulbricht, but only after every other non-violent drug offender gets clemency also. Anything less would perpetuate the injustice.

    1. I would recommend you "libertarians" watch the documentary - "The Fight for the Soul of Seattle | A KOMO News Documentary"

      It explains the second order consequentialism of simply "my body my choice." If you legitimize drug use, then there will be horrid slums that arise out of it. People with drug induced permanent brain damage that become mental cases, and commit crimes and atrocities. And so - what are you to do with them? - Except to take the trash out? And so the morality of it becomes clear. Drug usage causes mental health problems in people. Mental health problems in people create crime and allows for those people to lose their moral compass. Thus, Drug usage that causes such, is NOT moral. And traditionally, things that aren't moral get outlawed. Stealing is outlawed. Murder is outlawed. Rape is outlawed. Drugs that cause mental illness and the loss of moral compasses get outlawed too. If the "war on drugs" isn't satisfactory, then the tactics might want to be revisited, rather than the war itself. I mean - there would be a lot fewer criminals in prison if we legalized murder, stealing, and rape too, but it doesn't mean we should.

      1. The war on drugs has ravaged (mostly) minority communities due to drug gangs and high incarceration rates. It leads to broken homes and depressed property values, and futures destroyed. It is also a massive cost, draining huge amounts of money for police, courts and prisons. The war on drugs has also lead to a major degradation of our 4A rights, and many other civil rights. The war on drugs has also ravaged most of Central America.

        End it, end it now. Full legalization. Put some of the saved money into treatment. For drug users who commit other crimes, then prosecute them.

        1. The war on drugs has ravaged (mostly) minority communities due to drug gangs and high incarceration rates. It leads to broken homes and depressed property values, and futures destroyed.

          The "war" on drugs - or the drugs themselves. I would lean more towards the drugs themselves, destroying homes, futures, broken homes, and communities.

          It is also a massive cost, draining huge amounts of money for police, courts and prisons. The war on drugs has also lead to a major degradation of our 4A rights, and many other civil rights. The war on drugs has also ravaged most of Central America.

          Watch the documentary I mentioned above. In seattle, drug laws are not enforced at all. The cops are not arresting ANY of them - for drugs. But there is a tremendous drain on the police force, because of the high crime, the rapes, assaults, and escapades of mentally ill people, who are mentally ill because of long term affects of the drugs they took.

          End it, end it now. Full legalization. Put some of the saved money into treatment.

          I agree there should be better treatment methods. I am not a fan if civil asset forfeiture. I'm not a fan of cops taking people's money because they can lawfully assume it is for drugs. I am not a fan of minimum sentence for drug usage. But make no mistake - drugs create high crime areas. Slums. Garbage hole - violent places.

          For drug users who commit other crimes, then prosecute them.

          The problem with this - is drugs literally make people commit crimes. Watch the documentary. In seattle, this your experiment. Drugs are legalized. And its a shit-sandwich. There are assaults, suicides, rapes, murders, and crazies walking the street. We all know it is not moral. We all know what those drugs do to people - damage their brain, and cause them to lose their moral compass. Simple legalization isn't going to solve the problems associated with the drug trade. There are second and third order consequences that are occurring right now - in a place where it is legal: Seattle. So simple legalization is not the answer.

          1. The bulk of the problems that cities are having is not because of the drugs, but it is because of the illegality of drugs. It creates a black market that allows gangs and violence to thrive. It also leads to drugs that are impure or poison because they are made in illegal labs and not controlled facilities. If you legalize and have ample treatment options, then the problems will almost go away. We saw the same thing during Prohibition.

            1. The bulk of the problems that cities are having is not because of the drugs, but it is because of the illegality of drugs.

              Get hooked on meth, heroine, and see what it does to your family. So... disagree. Drugs are a problem. You are acting like drugs don't cause problems. Of course they do! The purpose of imprisoning and putting away drug dealers, violent gangs, and cartel, is to remove them from society so you don't have people trying to convince your kids and relatives to buy drugs. I'm very pro-gun, and the left make the same argument with guns. Keeping guns off the street keeps people from getting shot with guns. The problem with that argument is - people can use a gun without ever hurting anyone else. People use them for target practice, hunting, and other legal means. So a person can own and use a gun without ever hurting anyone else. But what can a person do with heroine or meth, legitimately? What can you use it for? Except to get high and get addicted and ruin your life and those around you.

              It creates a black market that allows gangs and violence to thrive.

              A free market with heroine, meth, and other horrible drugs is equally as bad. That's what I'm saying! LOL.

              It also leads to drugs that are impure or poison because they are made in illegal labs and not controlled facilities.

              Doesn't matter. Meth is inherently poisonous. Cocaine is inherently poisonous. They are all inherently poisonous. They were designed to get you high. Not to treat ailments or bacterial infections.

              If you legalize and have ample treatment options, then the problems will almost go away. We saw the same thing during Prohibition.

              Well - You aren't seeing the same thing in Seattle, where all drugs are legal. I agree there should be better treatment options. However, you haven't refuted the situation of Seattle in my example. Drugs are essentially legal there. Any drugs. Police don't enforce drug crimes - at all. So refute it then. Why is there high crime and rape, and murder, and mental cases walking the streets all over the place in Seattle? I'm not seeing it "go away" there.

              Recapitulation and other thoughts:
              1) We put drug dealers, violent gangs, and cartel in prison to REMOVE them from society. We don’t want them here. Literally, don’t want them. They create morally destitute environments. And that is a direct consequence of drug use.

              2) The purpose of laws and governance is also to maintain stable communities so individuals don’t seek violent retribution on other members. Why is murder illegal? Because it is morally wrong. Because if you murder someone, someone will likely seek to murder and murder you. Likewise with rape, theft, etc. These acts directly cause rage and resentment that causes members of the community to act upon them – and normally in violent means towards those of perceived perpetration. So we have laws, and if you break the law, the community punishes, rather than the victim of that crime. And that keeps everyone from delving into hell and chaos all around them and within the community. I’ll tell you right now – If a drug dealer persuaded and got my son or daughter hooked on some hard drugs, I would seek them out, and I would eliminate them. I would smother their life out. This is why these types of actions must remain illegal. Because members of the community will act on them.

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        2. Hey Molly got something right for once! As they say, a stopped clock is right twice a day!

          1. Quick question.

            So if a $20 baggie of heroine on the street reduces in price to $3 - due to a "free market" - does that really help the heroine addict?

            The addiction is the problem here. The later brain damage, cognitive decline, and mental illness to come as a result of taking these drugs, even the "pure" forms not containing toxins. The slums that grow out of them. Those are the problems. Not the cost of the drugs. And a "free market" isn't going to address that at all.

            1. It is not the medical effects of drugs that is causing the problems, nor the cost. It is the prohibition which causes the lack of treatment options, the crime, the stigma, and the loss of livelihood. For example, methadone is an effective treatment for opioid addicts, but the war on drugs makes getting that treatment difficult, and sometimes impossible.

              1. It is not the medical effects of drugs that is causing the problems, nor the cost.

                The physiological reactions and long term effects of hard drugs definitively cause problems. Even pure drugs with no toxins from the manufacturing process, causes harm. Meth and MDMA cause fever and burn up brain cells. If you think heroine is "okay" ask Chris Farley, or River Phoenix on those, or the countless others that die from it everyday. And those are just the problems incurred on the user. There are several orders of abstraction above those, that damage the family unit, the local community, the country, the world, etc.

                It is the prohibition which causes the lack of treatment options, the crime, the stigma, and the loss of livelihood.

                Completely disagree. There is no prohibition of companies doing drug testing on their employees randomly or during the hiring process. That is the free market at work. Entirely free market. And a good majority of the stigma comes from that, besides the fact that it is universally NOT MORAL. Further, there is NO prohibition on treatment options. In fact, when my nephew was arrested, again, and again, and again and again, they kept sending him to rehab, over and over again. There is NO prohibition on treatment options, at all. If there is a lack of treatment options, that is the free market at work. Loss of livelihood comes from being an addict that has lost their sense of moral decision making abilities. You see, morals don't matter, when they stand in the way of your next fix. So, I am off the exact opposite opinion of everything you just said - It's the drugs, not the law. Maybe the law isn't adequate in fixing the situation. But the law doesn't "cause" the situation - at all, and that is logical and reasonable.

                For example, methadone is an effective treatment for opioid addicts, but the war on drugs makes getting that treatment difficult, and sometimes impossible.

                Check into a rehab center, and they will have the drugs to keep you alive during withdrawals. Further, you are saying they can get illicit drugs like heroine but not illicit drugs like methadone? Do the drug laws work or don't they? Alternatively, they could see a doctor and subsequently a rehab center and get everything they need. My nephew had zero dollars in his pocket, a criminal record, and managed to get to, and through, a rehab center. So I seriously doubt the perceived unavailability of methadone is a problem.

                Alternatively, their doctor could get them Suboxone, or Clonidine. There are alternatives.

            2. So a guy gets caught with heroin because his doctor compassionately yanked him off his Percocet. He ends up being slapped with a felony and is no longer eligible for a job for the rest of his life.

              Is that going to help or hurt this man’s life, his brain, his addiction, or society at large? Maybe his Percocet addiction is the better alternative. How do most of these heroin stories begin “I hurt my back and got pain pills, then the doctor yanked my prescription and I got into heroin after that.” You are driving them to worse alternatives by acting like a nanny to every “not the healthiest thing” someone could do.

              1. Merry Christmas John/Molly.

                -Not going to talk about this now – Maybe next Monday.

                Have a good Christmas. I’m going to Carve a ham. Hug my kids. Watch a nice movie. Take a few days off of politics. I would recommend everyone else do the same.

              2. So a guy gets caught with heroin because his doctor compassionately yanked him off his Percocet.

                His doctor yanked him off Percocet because it's an opioid and is extremely addictive. It's probably a good thing he did it. Rather than hitting the streets looking for brown paper bags, the victim of pain should have asked his doctor for an alternative. If the doctor blindly prescribed him Percocet with no questions asked, then you get another giant faction of the populace blaming doctors for being drug dealers, pimps, and hustlers to prescription addicts. And... rightly so. Maybe the doctor pulled his Percocet prescription literally out of compassions sake - yes. Maybe he didn't want him to be an addict. And it is totally this guy's choice to say "no" to extremely addictive and deadly drugs made for the purpose of getting high, rather than "pain."

                He ends up being slapped with a felony and is no longer eligible for a job for the rest of his life.

                My brother is a felon, and he has a job. My brother-in-law is also a felon. He has a job. My niece is a felon. She has a job. Lots of felons have no problem getting jobs. Oftentimes it's not the job they want -which is true. But given the destructive consequences of a community introduced to hard drugs, I completely understand why they would make it a felony. Typically however, felonies are for dealers - not so much users, certainly in my state. And - that's good. Desired, actually. Further, if he is a drug user, he won't be able to get a job anyways, because most places require employment drug testing. And that is solely the free market at work.

                Is that going to help or hurt this man’s life, his brain, his addiction, or society at large? Maybe his Percocet addiction is the better alternative.

                That's a false dichotomy. Maybe no addiction is the better alternative, yeah?

                How do most of these heroin stories begin “I hurt my back and got pain pills, then the doctor yanked my prescription and I got into heroin after that.”

                Knowing dozens of friends, relatives, and acquaintances who were/are addicted to drugs. Literally none of them have stories such as this. They took drugs for "recreational" use. For fun. But if you got a link or something - I'll read it.

                You are driving them to worse alternatives by acting like a nanny to every “not the healthiest thing” someone could do.

                On no. I couldn't care less what healthy or non-healthy thing they do. I'm not their nanny. My problem isn't what they are doing or not doing to their body and whether or not it’s good for them - it's how their actions affect my life, and my families lives as a second or third order consequence of what they are doing. It's the slums, crime, public intoxication, the lack of moral compasses of addicts, that are the problem.

                Like murder, rape, stealing, etc., intoxication and severe addiction causes the loss of a person’s moral compass. As a direct result, they are not moral. This is why they are illegal, and why they will continue to be. Actions that directly cause immoral and communal decadence and decay (such as murder, rape, stealing, as well as hard drug trade) get banned. And drugs, particularly dangerous and extremely addictive drugs will continue to be in that category.

        3. Minority communities were originally put on a bad path by the democrats when the expanded the welfare state and incentivized the destruction of the nuclear family. As the democrats sought to exploit a permanent minority underclass.

          It’s the democrat way.

      2. Oh, the Argument from Revelation of the Future! How cogent, valid and convincing that must be to brain-dead, race-suicide, Rapture-awaiting superstitious hillbillies. The reason communist anarchists are able to get a foothold infiltrating the LP is that compared to pink font Lebensborn Republicans they seem almost rational. May women voters toss ALL of your miserable thugs under the wheels with the help of Libertarian spoiler votes. May the force you initiate demonstrate Newton’s Third Law that very instant.

        1. Hi Hank.

          Would you like your son to routinely "snowball" with heroine and cocaine, to feed his addiction to them, and be able to do so cheaply with high quality products at a cheap price provided by the free market? And if not - why not?

      3. This is some short sighted boot licking. If there is too many crazies running around, simply open up some crazy people hospitals. Done. Follow that up with education and shunning from that generation onward. This is beyond east to solve – especially when you factor in the trillion you just saved, and the tax money from the drugs. Only caveman would vote for more war on drugs. Dipshit.

        1. This is some short sighted boot licking.

          Well, its my boot. It's my faction. I voted for that boot. I guess I am licking my own boot?

          If there is too many crazies running around, simply open up some crazy people hospitals. Done. Follow that up with education and shunning from that generation onward.

          Democrats closed those hospitals. To commit them, they would have to do so forcefully. And your side wouldn't want that anyways.

          This is beyond east to solve – especially when you factor in the trillion you just saved, and the tax money from the drugs. Only caveman would vote for more war on drugs. Dipshit.

          If it was so "easy" to solve, it would be solved already.

          Further, a caveman might vote for more war on drugs, but it depends on the accuracy of your presupposition of what you perceive "war on drugs" means to me. In your case, it's not very accurate.

  5. Ross Ulbricht deserves a new trial at the very least. I’ve seen evidence suggesting he was guilty–based on the ads he put up for programming help that were traced to him way back when the site was still under construction.

    That being said, the question isn’t whether Ulbricht is guilty. The question is whether he got a fair trial, and the answer is no.

    1. That being said, the question isn’t whether Ulbricht is guilty. The question is whether he got a fair trial, and the answer is no.

      I don't like ulbricht. I think he's a POS. But... no. He did not get a fair trial - at all. And the sentence they gave him did not fit the crime.

      1. He would abort any child given the chance. He is a member of the Kermit Gosnell Fan Club.

        1. And just where the fuck did you get that?

          1. Sqrlsy – just ignore him. He’s a cancer.

  6. “Why President Trump Should Free Ross Ulbricht”

    But why should President Trump (or any other president) give a shit about what Libertarians think–after we slighted him at the polls?

    There is something childish about imagining that other people are trying to please us–regardless of how badly we’ve treated them in the past.

    Donald Trump is not our mother.

    If we want presidents to care what we think in the future, we need to reward them for doing things like killing a bailout of state and local government, negotiating a full withdrawal deal with the Taliban, opposing Medicare for All, and opposing the Green New Deal.

    We got waaaaaaaaaay too drunk at his Mom and Dad’s anniversary barbecue and we puked all over him and his parents. What an embarrassing mess! He’s not out shopping for an engagement ring. He’s not trying to impress us anymore. He’s blocked our calls. He’s defriended us. He doesn’t care what we think about Ross Ulbricht or anything else anymore–and neither do any of the other Republicans. They all saw what happened. We are not getting another date.

    Libertarian Jorgensen voters and Justin Amash are like a couple of drunken bums screaming profundities at passing cars from the side of the expressway–and imagining that their statements are having an impact on policy. Nobody cares what we think anymore. What we thought only mattered insofar as it could have changed the outcome of an election, and after the last election, they aren’t about to care about our support anytime soon.

    Trump and the Republicans shouldn’t care what we think about Ross Ulbricht. It is irrational for them to take our opinions into consideration at this point. We know Trump lost after pursuing so many of the policies we wanted. If he’d signed off on the $3.5 trillion stimulus and bailed out the state, maybe he’d have won!

    That’s what every Republican is thinking right now. They’re not thinking what we want them to think because we want them to think it. The Republicans aren’t our mom either.

    1. Does “we” include the commenters who post anti-anti-Trump remarks on this very forum?

      1. What are you saying?

        By “we”, I mean libertarian capitalists–those who foolishly enabled Biden to win and those who didn’t.

        Are you suggesting that me trying to persuade my fellow libertarian capitalists not to be so foolish in the future–and pointing out the negative consequences of their foolish choices–is somehow comparable to Trump and the Republicans not caring about what we think anymore?

        The Republicans not caring what we think anymore is one of the negative consequences I’m talking about. Policy is decided by who controls which branch of government in the short term, and politicians are primarily interested in us to the extent that appealing to us or making us mad will change the outcome of an election or who controls which branch of government. With that in mind, the Republicans should not care what we think for the foreseeable future because, apparently, we won’t vote for the Republican no matter how libertarian the policies they get behind or how socialist the policies of the Democrats.

        I hope that answered your question.

        1. I’m saying there are “libertarian capitalists” on these very boards who seem to have voted for Trump.

        2. Libertarians are fools indeed Ken. Always were. The fools on the hill.

          When we become Republicans or Democrats we become Republicans or Democrats. Identity is lost. We forget what we were. A youthful folly then but I see the new way now.

          I see your stealth campaign here.

          Who is this Trump guy? A has been loser one term president. No real ideology other than follow me. You still want to ride that? You need to jump off that rat ship and find someone else my friend.

          1. Libertarians are one constituency. We could have a dramatic impact on policy if we infiltrated one of the two major parties. We should go for the one that isn’t fundamentally hostile to capitalism.

            We cannot have a significant impact on policy through the LP because of Duverger’s Law–because of single member districts.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duverger%27s_law

            We can however have an impact on policy to the extent that we influence voters and the extent that we infiltrate the Republican party.

            There is no future in which the Libertarian Party becomes one of the two dominant parties, because of Duverger’s law, but we can transform the Republican party into having libertarian ideals. Refusing to vote for Republicans when they’re doing extremely libertarian things and when the Democrats are outright advocating socialism is defeating libertarianism in the most complete way. It is destroying our only available path to influence and power, and if you don’t understand that yet, read about Duverger’s law over and over again until you do.

            This is like arguing with progressives who refuse to believe in economic fundamentals. Single member districts mean third parties can’t win over successive election cycles. Feel it. Know it. Live it.

        3. Oh Amash and Jorgensen are not drunken bums screaming. They are both articulate, intelligent, principled, accomplished, and well spoken.

          If they are your enemies you should at least understand with whom you are dealing. These people and others are not buying this appeal to surrender.

          Nuts.

          Reply to the German Army by Gen. McAulliffe at Bastogne. December 22nd 1944

          1. You should work on your reading comprehension.

            The people driving down the expressway don’t care what Amash or Jorgensen voters are saying because it doesn’t matter.

            Policy is determined by which party controls which branch of government, and to the people who make policy, if it doesn’t help them win an election, then it doesn’t matter.

            We do not matter to them because, demonstrably, we won’t help them win an election, not even to reward killing a bailout of unfunded pension liabilities in progressive states, not even to reward an agreement to get us out of Afghanistan, and not even when the Democrats are openly advocating socialism and regulation by way of the Green New Deal.

            We have made ourselves a non-entity to them. We have no political value to them. They should ignore us. Anything they do to please us that might cost them some votes elsewhere is a mistake on their part. That is the bed we’ve made.

      2. Oh look! Milo Yiannopoulos is back, currishly fawning in Boss Trump’s lap and begging us to vote for the initiation of force. “Hitler is better than Stalin! You Americans should help, not hang us! Our socialism loves the Baby Jesus!” Convicted Nationalsocialist war criminals kept up this whining until the trapdoors opened and the firing squads fired. May 1945 is over and done with, face it! Ignorant girl-bullying rednecks with green teeth are what defeated Boss Trump. Your cowardly whimpering evokes not sympathy but schadenfreude!

        1. WTF are you talking talking about. Your phrasing isn’t clever, it’s just poor communication.

    2. Lookada Ku Klux Ken pretending to be a libertarian again! If Boss Trump’s party had any sense, the 4 million spoiler votes that crushed the Dems’ straddling evasions would’ve caused them to STOP shooting and robbing kids over leaves. The Dems learned, changed their platform, and beat the bloody snot out of God’s Own Prohibitionist standpatters. The Comstock Era died in 1885 when President Grant was Raptured to Heaven with a snootful of cocaine easing the pain of his throat cancer. Get over it or keep losing, Lewsers!

      1. What the Hell is wrong with you?

        1. Word salad. But you’re the one who started this you dirty fuck. Kill yourself.

      2. Rambling, incoherent thoughts that may contain logic.
        If I’m understanding – Repubs should support legalization of weed.
        Hank, one bong hit b4 posting please.

  7. “But shutting down Silk Road didn’t make drugs less readily available—it only pushed sales onto less trustworthy online platforms or back onto the streets.”

    Hey, this argument carried the day for abortion… excuse me, “women’s health.”

    What we need is a catchy new name for drug rights. “Stoners’ health?” Needs work, but you get the drift.

  8. Milton Friedman told off Drug Czarist puppet Bennett while repeating fascist prohibitionist myths known to be lies before Nixon wrecked the economy. Friedman’s futile appeal was to rights, which are anathema to National Socialist conservatives. What Friedman & Schwartz missed writing “The Great Contraction” is that Prohibition enforcement, not the Fed, directly caused all the crashes, contractions, banking panics and liquidity contractions of the Prohibition era. Jailing and robbing Ross is begging for another superstition-and-coercion-fueled Great Depression of the sort Republicans struggle to evade understanding. Prohibition and The Crash is cause and effect every time. Mystical looters are more dangerous to the economy than the communists their crashes cause to increase.

  9. “Why President Trump Should Free Ross Ulbricht”

    Because he’s a victim of prohibition.

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  11. Katherine Forrest is an evil monster.

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  12. The sentence is a result of a miscarriage of luck, but that’s the game you play when you turn down a plea deal and a jury of so-called peers (you know, morons) hears about your alleged multiple murder plot.

    Still, would be infinitely more justifiable a pardon than all the traitorous cronies.

    Ivanka and Jared’s children will be the first people in history to have a grandfather pardoned by another grandfather.

    I feel the the rule of law itself is on rather shaky grounds. Of course the government still has most of the guns and cages, legitimate or not.

    1. The rule of law is on very shaky ground because your party is completely lawless. You should all stop now.

      1. Sorry, I’m a Democrat. You’re looking for the party down the hall. Look out for the blatant attempt to steal the presidential election and the pardons of the incredible number of criminals associated with the president. You can’t miss them.

        1. Yep, no question. Democrats. You’re all crooked, or useful idiots.

          1. Yes, while Republicans are holy warriors of God, leading us into a bright, libertarian future! Go fuck yourself, moron.

  13. Zach should also research myths. Tim Leary begam a presentation by noting that LSD is primarily associated with defenestration. Leary was stalked by possibly abusive father Art Linkletter whose daughter ran away and committed suicide. The dad invented a claim that the girl had gotten high and hurled herself out a window, but the medical examiner’s report found otherwise. Like the oft-dinned myth of prayer books in soldiers’ pockets saving them from the gunfire of the Accursed Hun in WW1, these stories are all lies.

  14. It’s always amazing how losers refuse to take responsibility for their own actions, or the actions of other losers. The fault of drug addicts who OD on drugs is their own. It’s not the fault of the person who sold them the drugs. People who buy a gun and shoot themselves intentionally or accidentally, are to blame, not the gun seller. It’s the same with degenerate loser drug addicts.

    1. So the collapse of white rural communities due to opioid abuse has been caused by millions of individual people deciding to become no-account losers all in the same decade?

      1. We get it. You’re a democrat elitist who hates ‘flyover country’ and disparages people not from coastal cities.

        Hint: you’re not elite.

        1. I empathize with them just fine. I see them as the victims they are like a good liberal. And I will continue doing so no matter how long they stubbornly refuse any social action on their behalf by voting for kleptocrats.

  15. It’s hard to know whether his pardon would be legally or morally justified.

    It is clear that, politically, it would be unwise.

  16. Is it safe to start up the woodchipper?

  17. Ross Ulbricht is going to rot and die in prison, guaranteed. Not because he deserves it, but because he’s a political scapegoat and easily disposed of. Don’t expect that oaf Drumpf to pardon anyone actually meaningful.typhoon tv

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